How to Access YouTube in China

Ever have a vacation gone bad?

Imagine (or maybe you don’t have to imagine this, because you’ve experienced it) going on vacation and having a great time in Beijing – and you get off the plane, check into your hotel, open your laptop or iPad to watch the YouTube video of your brother’s extreme ski trip that he said he was going to post – and it’s BLOCKED! The government has decided that it’s dangerous for you to watch your brother ski??!!

Before reading this whole boring post, the answer to your problems is a beautiful website called that helped me access Youtube while I was traveling in China. It was super easy to use and most important, it had a free trial that I used to make sure this shit really works.

So back to my story 🙂 You want a vacation, but you don’t want one off the grid – so now the pressing question (even before “Where can I get some really good beer?”) is: How do I access YouTube in China?! Just want you need right now, huh? Finding a way to unblock YouTube….

There are a few options to consider, and I’ll outline the pros and cons for you – and then tell you what worked for me.


VPN stands for Virtual Private Network. It’s basically a way of putting your whole computer in different place – virtually. So if you have a VPN, your computer acts like it’s in the United States, or Canada, or England – or wherever the VPN is hosted. And so if YouTube isn’t blocked in the USA (thank heavens) – then it won’t be blocked on your computer, even if you happen to physically be in China.

Pros –

  • If it’s a decent VPN, it will work to access YouTube in China, Facebook, Twitter – whatever you want.
  • It’s secure (i.e. no spying on what you’re sending).
  • The entire computer and all programs that use internet access will work as if they are in another location.

Cons –

  • You have to install something on your computer – which can slow the computer down, especially if you have a Mac.
  • It will only work on the device you installed it on.
  • In China, it often won’t work for mobile devices.


A proxy is basically a website which will let you type in the site you want to see, and then instead of you accessing the site directly through your browser, you access it through this site as an intermediary. So if the proxy is located in a different location than you, it will show you the site the way you can see it in that location. So if your proxy is located in France, when you view YouTube through the proxy, it will act as if you are viewing YouTube in France.

Pros –

  • Nothing to install.
  • Can access it off any device.

Cons –

  • They often don’t work well for social media because the technology is complicated (Ajax, streaming video, etc.) – so if your goal is to access and unblock YouTube videos in China, it might not work.
  • China keeps blocking them one by one.
  • They only work for your browser, not other programs – say, Skype.
  • Usually not secure.

One other option, which I’ve used and can recommend – is a type of “web-based VPN” called Proxy Center.

It is a proxy – meaning it’s effectively putting your browser somewhere else, and you don’t have to install anything on your computer – but it’s secure and whoever is responsible for the programming knows how to handle complicated technologies. YouTube worked perfectly, and I could share the important stuff with my friends on Facebook.

One big plus is that Proxy Center has a free trial, which doesn’t require ANY personal info to start (no email, no credit card) – so you can SEE that it’s going to work before you commit to anything.

So… VPN, proxy, the “web-based VPN” of Proxy Center – check them out and hopefully one will work for you to access YouTube in China – and get your vacation off to a better start.

Good luck!

How to access Facebook from China

My name is Josh. I love traveling. I love Facebook. Now, this is everything you need to know in order to understand what happened to me this week. I arrived to Beijing on Monday and right when I landed I found out that Facebook is blocked in China and there is no way to access it from this side of the world.

tl;dr; I used to solve the problem and if you are looking for a good service that will help you access Facebook and Twitter while you are in China, check it out. it worked ok for me.

So we landed, and as I do when I land in any other place of the world, the first thing I do is to check in on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and lately also Snapchat. I know it is crazy, but this is me and this is how I keep my loved ones updated. Yes, I know, it is hard to call 5,000 Facebook friends ‘loved ones’ but yes, I love them. Got any problem with that? 🙂

So in the terminal when waiting for by bags to arrive, I take my phone and think about the funny post I’ll share with the world. Although I do have 5,000 friends, I really wanted to tell my mom that I arrived to China and everything is ok. And it didn’t work. And that sucked. Badly.

I tried to restart my phone and checked my cellular data, both on my iPad and my Android. Everything worked except Facebook. I got really nervous and then that nice lady came over to me and said: You can’t connect to Facebook, ha? She was smiling.

I told her: Yes, something is wrong with my phone, I’ll fix it in a minute, don’t worry about it. And she replied: No, it is not going to work. But Why? I asked, and she explained it and said that in China, Facebook is blocked and there is no way you can access it unless you use a service that overrides this blockages.

So the way it works is this: In order to access websites that are blocked, you need to access a website that is not blocked and use it in order to access other websites. It’s like telling your sister to tell something to your mother, without actually talking to your mother.

That woman referred me to that website that solves this problem, it is called it has a free trial and does not require any installation. I tried, it worked like a charm and after I saw that it really works, I have decided to get a paid account for my the whole year I’m going to spend in China.

If you know other ways to solve this problem, please feel free to share in the comments below.